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Schwarzenegger: pay or play:

The Reality-Based Community: Schwarzenegger and health care: Don't get greedy by Jonathan Zasloff: The Governator announced today his new plan for California health care. From the very sketchy details currently available, it doesn't seem like a terrible plan, although it could be better.

It appears to be basically a pay-or-play program similar to the kind that he opposed a couple of years ago: business must either ensure their workers or pay 4% of their payroll into a state program. It also put a 2% tax on doctors' receipts and a 4% tax on hospitals. Healthy Families (California's CHIP program) would be expanded to cover all children who aren't otherwise covered, bringing some federal money in....

We shouldn't get greedy. The most popular Republican governor--perhaps the popular Republican period--has a proposal for universal health coverage. Progressives now bemoan rejecting Bush I's proposals in 1991, Reagan's federal Medicaid buyout, and Nixon's FAP. I would rather take universality and then work on building a better model. Yes, single-payer would be better, but no, we're not going to get it now. Besides, more radical surgery at the state level might risk ERISA pre-emption...

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